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DIY Silhouette Art with Vinyl and Cardstock (No Tricky Photography or Editing Needed)

DIY Silhouette Art is really popular, but it can be a challenge if you have to take a picture in front of a window or use a special design program to remove the background.  With your Silhouette, you don't need either! All you need is vinyl and cardstock. 

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock
Expressions Vinyl provided Silhouette School the vinyl for this awesome project - and tons of others on this blog!

The great thing about making silhouette art with your Silhouette is you don't need any tricky photography or editing.  All you need is a semi-profile picture of your child.  Since my kids can't ever seem to face the camera when I'm taking a picture anyway, I had an abundance of profile photos to choose from.
I actually already had a profile cut file of my son in my Silhouette Studio library, since I used it when I engraved some charms last year. But I did need to make a silhouette of my daughter.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, bracelet charms

This is the image I decided to use of my daughter.


The first thing you need to do is bring the photo into Silhouette Studio.  As I explained in this tutorial, simply drag and drop the jpeg image into Silhouette Studio from the desktop.  You'll likely need to resize the image, so just pull the corner in towards the center to make the image smaller.

To get the silhouette, you're going to use the Draw a Curve Shape tool.  The tool allows you to drop edit points wherever you want. Start dropping points along the top of the head and add more points as you work your way all the way around.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, draw a curve shape tool

The edit points don't need to be evenly spaced.  They may be closer together on a curve and further apart across the bottom of the neck.

Be sure to pick up as many details as you can, but don't worry if it's not perfect at this point.

Once you have gone all the way around the photo dropping edit points the outline will turn red.

Now, zoom in really close...

Click on the 'Edit Points' tool this time and slightly move any of the points that need to be adjusted in or out.  The adjustments are fractions of an inch, but when you want a recognizable profile, it needs to be very precise. Points around the  nose, hairline and eyelashes are common spots for adjusting. 

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, edit points

If you need to add another point you can do that by just clicking on the red line. Delete points by using the options in the right side window.  Again, go all the way around the face, head and neck. 

Finally, be sure to connect the first and last edit points to create a closed design.  Once you've done this you can move the picture out of the way and delete it.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock

I find it's always easiest to 'see' the final result when the design is filled in. Since I was cutting on black vinyl, 631 from Expressions Vinyl to be exact, I changed the fill and the line color to black.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, line color

If the image doesn't fill, it means you have a break somewhere and you'll need to double click the line to see where the red point is indicating the break.  Zoom in really really close (it's likely not visible without zooming in) and double click the red point to fix it.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, point editing

Once you have a solid cut line, size the silhouette design to be cut.

If you have two silhouettes that you want to face each other, you can use the Replicate tool to mirror one of them, if necessary. 

I cut mine on black vinyl.  After weeding I used a piece of transfer tape, that I de-stickied a little, and the hinge method to place the vinyl design on a piece of crisp white cardstock.  (Wanna know a secret? Her eyelashes didn't make the cut...so I used a THIN black marker to draw them in.) 


Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, Silhouette Cameo

Then I framed them in simple black frames that I got at the craft store for about $8 each.

Silhouette Studio, art, DIY, do it yourself, vinyl, cardstock, Silhouette Cameo

Once you create a silhouette in Silhouette Studio be sure to save it to your library or hard drive so you don't have to go through the whole edit points process every time.

I love using vinyl in unexpected ways! It's seriously so versatile. Check out these other vinyl projects by some of my blogging buddies!





Note: This post may contain affiliate links. By clicking on them and purchasing products through my links, I receive a small commission. That's what helps fund Silhouette School so I can keep buying new Silhouette-related products to show you how to get the most out of your machine! 

Thanks for coming to class today at Silhouette School.  If you like what you see, I'd love for you to pin it!

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3 comments

  1. How do you " connect the first and last edit points to create a closed design"? Thank you for this blog! It has been a sanity-saver many, many times!)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great post !! And very helpful Article. I have more Great article about on this topic in here
    Thanks for share it .
    photo retouching service

    ReplyDelete
  3. This type of art has something special I think… I work with photo editing for a long time, sometimes I do silhouette photos for my clients using http://softwarehdr.com/mapp/ the best soft for it.

    ReplyDelete

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